Sunday, March 02, 2014

And the Best Supporting Award Goes to...SHORT RIBS!

Today is my most high holy day: OSCAR DAY! My goal was to be in my comfy chair, live-blogging undisturbed by the time the celebrities hit the red carpet. So early in the day, I started a crock pot of short ribs going. It was sort of a hybrid of a couple of my favorite recipes, and they turned out FABULOUSLY, if I do say myself--definitely deserving of a Best Supporting statuette!

Italian-Style Short Ribs

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 lbs.(more or less) short ribs seasoned with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic
2 onions, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
3 carrots, diced
2 red peppers, seeded and diced
*I sometimes throw 8 or 12 oz. of sliced mushrooms in as well, if I have them on hand
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups red wine
1 can tomato paste
2 tablespoons Italian herbs
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
pinch of hot red chili flakes
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
28 oz. diced or crushed tomatoes (I used one can Italian-style, plus one can fire-roasted)
1 1/2 cups beef broth

Abbreviated methodology:
Brown the ribs on all sides, add to the crock pot. Drain off all but two tablespoons of the fat from the pan and sauté all veggies until tender. Deglaze with wine, and add the rest of the ingredients. Stir, pour over ribs. Cook on high until the bones fall out (remove those as well as any big fatty/grisly bits), then cook a little longer until the meat can be pulled apart easily. Check the seasoning and serve over pasta (preferred) or mashed potatoes.

Note: As this is cooking, use a turkey baster to keep siphoning off the fat from the top of the sauce. Alternately, if you have the time, when it's done cooking, refrigerate overnight, remove the solidified fat and reheat. As a bonus, the flavors will be even better the second day!

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